Friday, December 23, 2011

Super Hero Cape Tutorial

This tutorial is WAYYYYY long over due.  Since Nathan's birthday last year when I made 7 capes, I've made 11 more!!  Here is a quick tutorial on how to do it.  Anyone who can sew a straight line can do it!

1.  My mom helped me design these.  We started with two colors of fabric, one for the outside and one for the lining.  First, cut both pieces of fabric into 21" by 20" squares.
The fabric is folded in half here, so that the angles would be symmetrical.
2.  Cut the bottom into a point with the shortest section being 17" and the bottom section being about 3" wide. 
Does that help?  Yuck, I can see my old Blackberry in this pic!
3.  Print out a Superman emblem onto a full size of paper and cut it out.
Found via Google Images
4.  Pin the paper emblem to your desired color of felt and cut out the felt.  If you are going to use an embroidery machine to stitch names onto the emblem, iron stabilizer on the back.   If you don't have an embroidery attachment, you can leave the emblem blank and buy stick-on stars or other shapes to have kids decorate their own capes, or use stick-on felt letters to spell out the kids' names. The possibilities are really endless here.

5.  Pin the completed emblem onto the top piece of fabric and, using a zig-zag stitch, sew the emblem to the fabric.

6.  Next, pin both pieces of fabric together, wrong sides together.  Make sure to pin where you will leave a hole to accommodate the tie string.  I just eyeballed it to go a couple inches above the top of the emblem.  I wanted the emblem to be in the middle of the child's back and wanted a little bit of a collar to ruffle at the top.

7.  Start to sew in straight stitches, leaving a 1/4 inch seam.  When you get to these pins as you are sewing, backstitch to make sure it wouldn't unravel in the wash or anything, jump to the next pin and backstitch again.  Make sure to leave a hole in the cape in order to turn it right side out.
8.  Turn it right side out and iron the seams flat.

9.  Next, top stitch all the way around, skipping over the holes for the tie string again.  You will then stitch across the top of the cape, from one side of the little hole to the other, making a track for the tie string to stay in.  (Note: It looks like I had sewed along the entire edge, but I just hadn't snipped the string that jumps across the start and finish of the hole yet.  You will need that hole to be open in order to thread the string through.)

10.  The last step is to thread your string through the track.  I have used ribbon and I have also used binding tape (folded in half and stitched closed).  Then secure, you can use a cord stop on each side, or you can ruffle up the collar to your desired effect and stitch the ends of the track closed.  Stitching it closed makes it not adjustable, but I don't really think that matters too much.  Nathan's cape is stitched closed and he doesn't mind that he can't adjust it.

Happy cape making!!

Decorating capes at Nathan's birthday last year
Wearing the completed capes
Running in the neighborhood to save the day!
Finished cape from my Craft It Forward project

Do you have any little ones who would like a super hero cape?  Who is YOUR favorite super hero?  Maybe you can just make one for yourself!  Or by like my friend and make one for your dog! :)

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